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Carol Perkins/Travelogue: Critique of Branson

It's picturesque, very similar to, but not quite like the writer's South Central Kentucky world, around Edmonton, Metcalfe County, KY. The Perkins family went a tiny bit ahead of the Branson mobbed season. She was dismayed at seeing so many massive theaters for sale. "The food was good, the rest was welcomed, and the Wildcats advanced to the finals. If you have not been to Branson, I recommend staying away from there during the busy season, especially if you have a short fuse in bumper to bumper traffic and small children without IPADS.' she writes. Click on headline for complete column.
The next earlier Carol Perkins column: Carol Perkins: Riding elevatorsA harrowing story of an experience in a Louisville Hospital. Posted April 13, 2014.

By Carol Perkins

Looking for a place to go for a long weekend that neither of us had been, Guy and I searched the map and found such a spot. We had never been to Branson, Missouri, so immediately after filing our taxes; we healed our wounds by leaving town.ic of others such as the John Denver Show, The George Strait Show, etc.

The food was good, the rest was welcomed, and the Wildcats advanced to the finals. If you have not been to Branson, I recommend staying away from there during the busy season, especially if you have a short fuse in bumper to bumper traffic and small children without IPADS. - Carol Perkins


Branson is now third most visited tourist attraction in America, according to their stats

What was once a quaint little town is now, according to their stats, the third most visited tourist attraction in America. I found that hard to believe when compared to the Disney locations, Gatlinburg, New Orleans, etc. However, I was not there in peak season, so what do I know.

Set in the Ozark Mountains, Branson is surrounded by lakes, steams, budding trees, and all the other picturesque images you can conjure. However, I couldn't help but compare what I saw to what I am surrounded by in my own South Central Kentucky location. Very similar. What was to be one of our best stops was at the College of the Ozarks and more specifically the Keeter Center. Much like Berea, this was a working college complete with a farm and a job for everyone. The Keeter Center was a lodge and a four star restaurant where students were servers, cooks, and busboys. A must stop for Branson tourists.

Branson is basically seven-mile stretch down Highway 76

The layout of Branson is basically a seven-mile stretch down Highway 76 crammed with restaurants, hotels and motels, live entertainment, shopping, and theme parks. According to the locals, this stretch from April through the start of school is packed with tourist, causing the traffic flow to move at the pace of a snail. I was glad we missed the mob.

Condo overlooking the river was nice

During our stay we went to two shows. We spent all of Saturday watching NCAA basketball games in a small condo at Branson Landing, an upscale shopping area with the same stores one would find in any mall. However, it did overlook the river, so that was nice. As for the shows, we saw the Irish Tenors and the Celtic Women. Both groups were excellent. There were only about a hundred in the auditorium that held thousands, but they performed as if to a full house. If we booked a second show at this theater, we got half price tickets, so we booked for a show called Jersey Nights with the music from the hit Jersey Boys.

Settling in at show with retirees, most of whom were limping and gimping

When we went back for that performance and settled in with the retirees, most of whom were limping and gimping as we were, imagine our surprise when the roles of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons were played by the Irish Tenors. I looked at Guy and he looked at me. Something didn't seem right about that. Plus, one of the Celtic Women was now one of the dancers. I felt cheated.

I was disheartened to see so many of the massive theaters for sale. By that, I wondered if the Branson days were what they once were. As far as big names, I didn't see any headliners I recognized. Most of the performances were entertainers doing the music of others such as the John Denver Show, The George Strait Show, etc.

The food was good, the rest was welcomed, and the Wildcats advanced to the finals. If you have not been to Branson, I recommend staying away from there during the busy season, especially if you have a short fuse in bumper to bumper traffic and small children without IPADS. - Carol Perkins


This story was posted on 2014-04-20 07:16:40
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